Engineering, Development and Philosophy

American, Chinese and European Perspectives

  • Steen Hyldgaard Christensen
  • Carl Mitcham
  • Bocong Li
  • Yanming An

Part of the Philosophy of Engineering and Technology book series (POET, volume 11)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxvii
  2. Rethinking Philosophy of Engineering and Development

  3. Rethinking Engineering Education

  4. Rethinking Perspectives on Engineering, Nature, and Society

  5. Back Matter
    Pages 397-412

About this book


This inclusive, cross-cultural study rethinks the nexus between engineering, development, and culture. It offers diverse commentary from a range of disciplinary perspectives on how the philosophies of today’s cultural triumvirate—American, European and Chinese—are shaped and given nuance by the cross-fertilization of engineering and development. Scholars from the humanities and social sciences as well as engineers themselves reflect on key questions that arise in this relational context, such as how international development work affects the professional views, identities, practice and ethics of engineers.   The first volume to offer a systematic and collaborative study that cuts across continental boundaries, the book delineates the kinds of skills and competences that tomorrow’s engineering success stories will require, and analyzes fascinating aspects of the interplay between engineering and philosophy, such as how traditionally Chinese ways of thinking can influence modern engineering practice in the world’s most populous country. China’s problematic mix of engineering woes and wonders, from the high-profile crash on its high-profile rail network to its ‘bird’s nest’ Olympic stadium, adds to the urgency for reform, while Europe’s Enlightenment-informed legal frameworks are contrasted with Chinese mechanisms in their governance of the field of nanotechnology, a crucial element of future technical evolution. Fascinating and compelling in equal measure, this volume addresses one of the topics at the leading edge of humanity’s quest to survive, and to thrive.​


Chinese Philosophy on Engineering and Social Development Chinese, European and American Perspectives Cultural Encounters Dam Construction Ethics in China Engineering and Development in Modern China Engineering and Harmonization with Nature Ethics in Engineering Development Philosophy of Green Engineering Rethinking Engineering Education Rethinking Perspectives on Engineering and Sustainability Rethinking philosophy of Engineering and Development Sustainable Development The development of railroads in the United States and China

Editors and affiliations

  • Steen Hyldgaard Christensen
    • 1
  • Carl Mitcham
    • 2
  • Bocong Li
    • 3
  • Yanming An
    • 4
  1. 1., Institute of Business and TechnologyAarhus UniversityHerningDenmark
  2. 2., Dept of Liberal Arts & Int'l StudiesColorado School of MinesGoldenUSA
  3. 3., Department of Social SciencesGraduate University of Chinese Academy oBeijingChina, People's Republic
  4. 4., Department of LanguagesClemson UniversityClemsonUSA

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2012
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Engineering Engineering (R0)
  • Print ISBN 978-94-007-5281-8
  • Online ISBN 978-94-007-5282-5
  • Series Print ISSN 1879-7202
  • Series Online ISSN 1879-7210
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
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